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Kauai addict needs advice about the Big Island

Kauai addict needs advice about the Big Island

Old Dec 27th, 2012, 08:21 AM
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Kauai addict needs advice about the Big Island

DH, my brother, sister-in-law, and I are wanting to go to Hawaii from May 26-June1. The plan so far has been to take my brother/sister-in-law to Kauai but I started thinking of going to the Big Island. My brother/sister-in-law have never been to Hawaii. DH & I have been to Oahu (once) and Kauai (four times).

I need advice from Big Island experts...

For starters, I found this VRBO rental: http://www.vrbo.com/133282
I was thinking we could start the trip here and visit Volcanoes National Park.
1) If we move during the trip, where should our next base be? Kona?
2) What if we didn't move...what could we do at this base?
3) How do Big Island addicts feel about Kona vs Hilo?

As for us, we want to do typical activities...relaxing on a beach, hiking, snorkeling, get up close to some sea turtles.
4) Favorite beaches?
5) Favorite activities?

louistraveler5 is offline  
Old Dec 27th, 2012, 08:27 AM
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You should ask this question on Trip Advisor. There are several destination experts there that live in the general area and can give you the best advice.

From my experience, Puna is a place to stay away from and is horribly inconvenient for visiting anything but Hilo and the volcano region.
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Old Dec 27th, 2012, 10:17 AM
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That's a great looking place! I've bookmarked it! We loved our 4 night stay in V V at Maile Treehouse and 4 nights in Hawi a couple of years ago. Our first trip to BI after we stopped counting once we hit a dozen trips to the islands.

That said, as a tour director for first time visitors I would stick with Kauai. ( I am also an addict of many trips). BI entails a LOT of driving on either side of the island, and I wouldn't want to spend hours in the back seat day after day. Unless of course you spend the second half at one of the North Kohala resorts that have quick access to beaches and settle in.

When bringing first timers to Hawaii, we chose what was familiar - Hanalei. It was great to be able to walk to sunrise and sunset, to town and shops and restaurants and left a lot of freedom on who would join in exploring other parts of the island. They got to see and experience a great deal of Kauai, including Polihale on the opposite end, while still having plenty of down time taking it all in. Some hiked the first couple of miles of NaPali, while others surfed or went horseback riding or sat on the beach with a great book.

If you are really wanting to try the BI, there are a couple of great destination experts on BI and quite a few know it alls - my way or the highway experts on TA.

Hopefully, you will now get advice that completely disagrees with me from a few posters. That said, not once, in all of our trips, have we ever been disappointed. Be clear what the first timer's expectations are. The lava may or may not be flowing, so that is always an important thing to consider.

Good luck.
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Old Dec 27th, 2012, 10:56 AM
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I think the vrbo place looks great for a night or two; VNP is a fascinating place to visit whether there is lava flowing, or not (these days, if it is flowing you would not be viewing it from the park anyway). However, for the beaches you will want the Kona side.
A visit to the VNP area, then maybe a condo in one of the west side resorts to enjoy the beaches? We've stayed here and thought it was an excellent location: http://www.vrbo.com/413069
We also got a killer deal on the Hapuna Beach Prince hotel (http://www.princeresortshawaii.com/h...otel/index.php) a couple of years ago (~$132/night), but I don't recall if it was hotwire or priceline.
So, maybe let the first-timers do an hour or so of research, and decide on the BI or Kaui? Such a difficult decision
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Old Dec 27th, 2012, 12:07 PM
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North Shore Kauai/Bali Hai is our favorite - but we put Big Island as 1-A. If you only have 6 or 7 days, you might consider first flying into Hilo - and getting up to the Volcano for a night (or maybe two - at one of the places in Volcano Village or at the Volcano House,) and then it's easy (20 minutes or so) from the Volcano area back to the Hilo airport.

You can also snorkel south of Hilo, whatever you like - and after that - spend the last 4/5 days up on the North Shore of Kauai.

Or - you could plop for the whole time one island or the others.
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Old Dec 27th, 2012, 12:36 PM
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Thanks everyone...especially Lookin_Glass!

My brother said it doesn't matter which island and that DH & I can choose what we think is best. After thinking it over all day, I do think the best trip would be to Kauai.

DH & I can show my brother/sister-in-law the beauty of Kauai that we adore. Also, Kauai is familiar to DH & I. We know our way around; we have certain things that we do there. If we went to the BI then it would be our first time and instead of showing someone around we would be thrown into unfamilar territory.

No one has to twist my arm to return to Kauai!
louistraveler5 is offline  
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